Journal article

Compressional rheology: A tool for understanding compressibility effects in sludge dewatering

Anthony D Stickland

Water Research | PERGAMON-ELSEVIER SCIENCE LTD | Published : 2015


Water and wastewater treatment sludges exhibit compressible behaviour due to flocculation and aggregation. At a critical solids concentration called the gel point, which is as low as 1-2 v/v%, a continuous interconnected network of particles is formed that can resist an applied load. The applied load (mechanical filtration pressure or buoyancy in settling for example) must exceed the network strength in order to consolidate the network. The network strength increases with solids concentration such that the equilibrium extent of consolidation is a function of the applied load. Improved understanding of the nature of compressible suspensions can have a significant impact through optimising des..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by Australian Research Council

Funding Acknowledgements

This paper was presented by the author as a keynote address at FILTECH2013, 22-24 October 2013, Wiesbaden, Germany. Colleagues at the University of Melbourne who have contributed to the work on wastewater treatment sludges include Peter Scales, Ross de Kretser, David Dixon and Shane Usher. Various aspects for the wastewater treatment sludge work have been funded by the Australian Research Council (LP130100395), the Particulate Fluids Processing Centre, Brisbane Water, Melbourne Water, United Utilities and Yorkshire Water.